Author(s): Vogeser M, Seger C
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Novel mass spectrometric techniques such as atmospheric pressure ionization and tandem mass spectrometry have substantially extended the spectrum of clinical chemistry methods during the past decade. In particular, liquid chromatography tandem-mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) has become a standard tool in research laboratories as well as in many clinical laboratories. Although LC-MS/MS has features that suggest it has a very high analytical accuracy, potential sources of inaccuracy have recently been identified. CONTENT: The sources of inaccuracy in LC-MS/MS methods used in the routine quantification of small molecules are described and discussed. Inaccuracy of LC-MS/MS methods can be related to the process of ionization through the insource transformation of conjugate metabolites or target analytes and may also be attributable to ionization matrix effects that have a differential impact on target analytes and internal-standard compounds. Inaccuracy can also be associated with the process of ion selection, which mainly occurs when compounds from the sample matrix share mass transitions with a target analyte. In individual assays, most potential sources of inaccuracy can be controlled by sufficient LC separation-based sample workup before MS analysis. SUMMARY: LC-MS/MS methods should undergo rigorous and systematic validation before introduction into patient care.
This article was published in Clin Chem
and referenced in Journal of Chromatography & Separation Techniques